Dear Chandler Community,
Thank you for your participation in the Head of School Search process as we seek to identify a successor for our dear John Finch. On behalf of the committee, I am writing to provide an update on the search and detail next steps.
Educators’ Collaborative (EC) consultants, Marcus Hurlbut and Joan Beauregard, have concluded the community listening sessions and surveys. While there were a few setbacks due to the pandemic and we were unable to conduct sessions in person as originally planned, we are extremely proud of how many of you showed up and engaged in this important step via zoom. Altogether, EC conducted listening sessions and collected confidential survey responses from student representatives, parents, faculty, staff, administration, CFA, trustees, and alumni. This broad representation of voices proved invaluable in understanding the state of our school and the characteristics we are seeking in the next Head of School.
EC has taken our inputs and developed a position prospectus (“Information for Candidates”, “IFC”) identifying the key attributes, characteristics and qualities we are looking for in our next Head of School, such as: an Educator and Life Long Learner, Cultural Alignment and Commitment to DEI, Collaborative & Empathetic Leadership Style, Exceptional Interpersonal & Communication Skills, Strategic Leadership, Strong Business Acumen and Solid Management Skills. The prospectus has been posted on several sites, including but not limited to the Chandler website, the EC website, the California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS) and the National Association of Independent School’s (NAIS) website. You can view the prospectus here
While the prospectus has just recently been posted, EC has already begun working incredibly hard to build a diverse and well-suited pool of candidates. Their efforts thus far have resulted in a high level of interest from candidates with strong and impressive backgrounds and experience.
The next phase of the search will be conducted almost exclusively behind the scenes as EC recruits and does the initial vetting of candidates through interviews and reference checks. In early April, the Search Committee will review candidate dossiers presented by our consultants and select a set of candidates for preliminary, confidential interviews. During this semi-finalist stage, the Search Committee will have the opportunity to conduct thorough interviews and deliberate extensively about each candidate before bringing forward a select group of finalists who will visit Chandler’s campus and meet with our community. To ensure candidate privacy, all communications with candidates and all interviews prior to the finalist stage will be handled in a confidential manner by EC and the Search Committee.
The success of the Head of School search will continue to depend on the input that the Search Committee and the consultants receive from the Chandler community. Looking ahead, all members of our community who wish to meet the finalists will have an opportunity to do so. As part of the finalist visits anticipated in late April and early May, the school will hold a number of forums for various constituent groups to have an opportunity to meet with the candidates. Those who meet with finalists will then be invited to complete a confidential survey offering their impressions, which will be collected and collated by our consultants and shared back with the Search Committee.
As a reminder, the Head-Elect will not officially assume responsibilities at Chandler until July 1, 2023, upon the conclusion of Mr. Finch’s tenure. However, the transition process will commence as soon as the Head-Elect is named, anticipated in May of 2022. When possible, we anticipate the Head-Elect will visit the campus for key events throughout the school year to acclimate to our culture.
Please continue to visit the Head of School Search web page
for recent announcements, past communications, and other important information regarding the search. You can also access a Head of School FAQ page on the website
Thank you for your engagement in this process and, on behalf of the Search Committee, I look forward to keeping you informed on the process and new developments.
Khalilah El-Amin, ‘91 (Sabreen ’23)
Chair, Head of School Search Committee